Monday, September 14, 2015





Indonesia AirAsia X to be Grounded?

Government Poised to Halt Operations of Indonesian AirAsia X for Failure to Meet Minimal Fleet Size Requirements

The Sydney Morning Herald reports that the long-haul air carrier Indonesia AirAsia X is under threat of being shutdown by the Indonesia Ministry of Transportation in October 2015 for its failure to sustain a minimum-sized fleet of 10 aircraft, the number of planes the government says is needed for an airline to remain operationally viable.

Indonesia AirAsia X operates only two Airbus A330 aircraft at this time. The regulations issued by the government requires that all Indonesian carriers town at least five aircraft by October 2015 and lease an additional five to meet the minimum fleet size of 10 planes.

This looming threat of a shutdown is set to take place against Indonesia AirAsia X who currently operate flights from Melbourne to Bali. While the Melbourne to Bali route is in operation, plans by the airline are to commence a five-time-a-week service between Sydney and Bali commencing October 17, 2015.

The CEO of the Airline, Kurniawan, said active discussions were underway with the Ministry to make Indonesia AirAsiaX compliant with the rules.

The Director General of Air Transportation has announced that there are eight airlines that could see their flight permits withdrawn in October for failure to meet equity rules of the Ministry. The eight airlines facing possible shut down are: Indonesia AirAsia X, Transnusa Aviation Mandiri, MyIndo Airlines, Jayawijaya Dirgantara, Aviastar Mandiri, TRI MG Intra Asia, Asian One Air and Mathew Air Nusantara.

Indonesian law requires that scheduled air operators must have at least five owned airplanes and five leased planes to meeting licensing requirements. Charter operators must own at least one plane and have two planes on lease.

However, with only two aircraft in operation and the need to secure ownership or lease control of another 8 airplanes in less than 30 days, it appears that Indonesian AirAsia X will have to cease operations or obtain a “special exemption” from the rules issued by the Ministry.

Officials will, however, find it politically problematic to cut the Airline slack given Indonesia AirAsia X’s business affiliation with Indonesian AirAsia who remain under scrutiny in the December 2014 crash of an Airbus A320 flying from Surabaya to Singapore that claimed the lives of 162 passengers and crew.

Gambling Not Allowed in Bali

Bali Police Raid Illegal Gambling Den in Downtown Denpasar

Crime fighters from Bali Police raided an illegal gambling den operating as “Bali Zone” in the Kertawijaya shopping complex in Denpasar. quotes the deputy chief of the Denpasar Police, Nyoman Artana, who confirmed that police had seized tens of electronic “Dingdong” machines imported to Bali from Batam Island. Adding: “The 49 ‘Dingdong’ machines cam from Batam. Police say the operator has broken two laws. First, the location had no operating license and, secondly, the machines were games of skill in which money could be wagered and won.”

Also taken into custody with 6 employees of Bali Zone and two customers named: Robertus Doondoh, Daniel Peter Resik, Shristine Juneth Parinusa, Kartini, Ni Luh Eri Pariawati, Sri Wahyuni and Lodia Ningsih Nale, Mutohiro.

Collected by police as evidence at the scene were Rp. 3,490,000 in cash, two cashier machines, and value vouchers used in the game of chance.

Ironically, on the second floor of Bali Zone a sign was prominently displayed prohibiting gambling, the exchange of vouchers for cash and the consumption of alcohol. Police say the signs were only a front for the illegal activities underway at the location.

Police have placed the name of Ajin, the owner of Bali Zone, on their most wanted list in connection with illegal gambling.

According to police, gambling at Bali Zone was segregated across the two floors of the building. People betting with Rp. 30,000 coins were on the ground floor, while the second floor was for those betting in Rp. 50,000 denominations.

Police estimate that the gambling den had a daily turnover in revenues of between Rp. 10 – 15 million, a fact confirmed by Anton Gunawan who worked as manager of the gambling center.

Police continue to search for two people in connection with the operation of the illegal gambling location.

A Trump Card Hidden up Your Sleeve

Local Officials Claim No Formal Confirmation of Plans by Trump Hotels to Redevelop Bali Nirwana Golf and Hotel Complex

Local media reports that American businessman and presidential hopeful Donald Trump is investing in the Pan Pacific Nirwana Bali Resort (NBR) at Tanah Lot are not being confirmed by those managing the existing resort. quotes Salman Alfaeidzi in charge of marketing and communications at the Pan Pacific Nirwana Bali Resort Tanah Lot, who said on Thursday, September 10, 2015  he knew nothing of the reported change of management.

Pan Pacific is the current manager of the hotel and golfing complex.

Meanwhile, Bali Governor Made Mangku Pastika is similarly confessing to have no knowledge on the purported plans for the Trump Hotel Collections to establish its first property in Asia on the Island of Bali. When quizzed by reporters, Pastika said he would ask for details of the proposed investment from the Regent of Badung.

Adding to the confusion, the head of Tabanan’s Investment and Permits Agency, I Gusti Nyoman Arya Wardana, confirmed that his office has yet to be contacted regarding plans to develop a “six star” resort operated by Trump Hotels - being widely reported as a “done deal” in the media.

Wardana cautioned that any plans to build a Trump Hotel in Bali would have to follow local rules and regulations from both the Tabanan Regency and Province of Bali.

Made Sumawa, traditional head (Bendesa) of the village surrounding the Hotel, reported that he had been told changes were being made in the management of the Resort, but was unclear if renovations or an enlargement of the resort were planned.

Sumawa said he hope the original concept of the resort to protect and enhance the welfare of the local community by providing employment opportunities would be preserved in any planned changes at the Resort.

The Art of the Deal Made in Bali

Know One Knows What Goes on Behind Closed Walls

Local Citizens Suspect Illegal Construction Taking Place at Hotel Crystal on the Bay Bali Construction Site

Despite being under formal closure seal by Badung regency officials for zoning and building infractions since June 3, 2015,  the Regency’s Enforcement Agency (Satpol PP Badung) has revisited the building site of the Hotel Crystal on the Bay prompted by fears that construction has illegally resumed.

DenPost quotes the head of Satpol PP Badung, Ketut Mertha, who confirmed that no construction is taking place at the outlawed construction site and that the developer has merely installed plywood sheeting on the fence surrounding the project.

DenPost says that the installation of plywood sheeting on the Hotel Crystal on the Bay has completely obscured any view from the outside of any possible construction activities taking place on the lower floors of the project.

The new fencing has fueled questions from a number of Nusa Dua residents about the current status of the Hotel project accused of violating height requirements, infringing on a protected mangrove forest area and failing to hold the required building permits. A local member of the Badung House of Representatives (DPRD-Badung), Wayan Luwir Wiana, told the press that area residents suspect that changes in the perimeter wall is being done to obscure illegal construction being performed on the building.

Luwir said public distrust on this point is warranted due to the fact that since the construction of the project commenced the perimeter fence has been a short structure providing a full view of the hotel. Luwir views even small alterations in the fencing surrounding the project as representing a violation of official orders from the Regency that all work on the errant project must come to a complete halt until the required permits are in hand.

Luwir Wiana also questions the monitoring of the Hotel Crystal on the Bay by Satpol PP Badung officials. Because the project is under official closure seal, Luwir’s opinion is that any activity at the project site must be approved in advance by the Judicial Team of the Province of Badung.

According to DenPost, up to and including September 8, 2014, the developers of the Hotel Crystal project have failed to request permits and licenses from Badung’s Coordinated Agency for Permits and Licenses (BPPT-Badung). The head of BPPT-Badung, Made Sutama, confirmed that no permits would be issued to the project until it is in complete conformance with all local rules and regulations.

Badung officials have determined that the hotel project is 8-meters taller than the maximum permissible height of 15 meters allowed under provincial and regional building codes.

Related Articles

Rare Enforcement of the Law

The Slow Hand of the Law

Broken Crystal

Too Big for its Own Beaches

Eight Meters of Illegality

Crystal Ball Gazing

Less than Crystal Clear

Permission, After the Fact

A Bali Boondoggle?

Jakarta City Councilors Criticized for Time and Money Wasting ‘Study Tour’ to Bali

The Jakarta Globe and Kompas report an embarrassing series of events surrounding a “study trip” to Bali by a group of Jakarta City Councilors.

32 Jakarta metropolitan officials, accompanied by a staff of 8, departed for Bali on Wednesday, September 9, 2015 at a cost of Rp, 341 million (US$23,800) picked up by the taxpayers.

The highlights of the “official study tour” included:

·        A meeting by the Councilors with the members of the Provincial Legislature (DPRD-Bali), was cancelled because the Bali lawmakers were on their own “study trip” to Yogyakarta.

·        A visit to the pilot “trash bank” project where impoverished local residents can sell recyclable trash for money. An Official waiting to receive the Jakarta visitors said only one of the 32 councilors bothered to keep the appointment.  And, then, the sole visitor reportedly asked no questions, took only four photographs and promptly departed.

·        Prabowo, one Councilor on the “study tour” complained to the press that a daily per diem of Rp, 480,000 was insufficient, requiring the visitor to use his own funds to purchase gifts and souvenirs.

Somewhat ironically, one of the declared missions of the “study tour” to Bali was to find out how Bali manages “to keep its roads so smooth” and view reclamation activities in Benoa Bay.

A researcher from Indonesian Corruption Watch labeled the visit as a waste of time, saying the Councilors would learn nothing from the so-called “study tour.” “It just doesn’t make sense, they’ve got it backward. Are they going on a study trip or on vacation? If they wanted to study, they could have stayed [in Jakarta],” lamented the Corruption Watch official.

Sebastian Slang of the Concerned Citizens for the Indonesian Legislature (Formappi) also called the trip a “waste of time and money.” Adding that the missed appointments with local officials “are the kind of thing that proves that there’s no urgency to these study trips. They go simply out of a desire to travel.”

Sebastian has called for an enquiry by the council’s ethic board surrounding the “study tour” to Bali.

Strip Mall Fire in Bali

Fire Destroys 7 Businesses in Tuban Plaza Complex Near Bali’s Airport

A fire destroyed at least seven places of business in the Tuban Plaza Complex on the Bypass in the Tuban area of Bali in the early hours of Thursday, September 10, 2015.

The fire that started at 4:30 am was still burning at 11:00 as smoke continued to billow from the structure.

The fire was first seen at a post office outlet in the complex where it was fed by stocks of packing material stored there, before spreading to adjoining shops.

According to, firefighting teams from the Badung and Ngurah Rai Airport fire stations responded to the fire. More than 10 trucks involved at the height of the inferno were seen rushing back and forth from a local irrigation ditch to resupply with water.

By 11:30 the fires had been extinguished but the structures continued to produce smoke.

Rahmawati of the Kuta Police Precinct confirmed that seven businesses were affected by the fire that included the Post Office outlet, the Tuban Angkasa Pura office, BTPN Bank, and four other local businesses including a local massage parlor.

Police and fire officials continue to investigate the cause of the fire.

Bali: Where You’re Going to Run to in 2016

2016 Bali Interhash Event May 19-22, 2016 Expected to Attract 6,000 Runners

The Assistant-Deputy for Destination Development and Nature Tourism at the Indonesian Ministry of Tourism, Aswir Malaon, has announced that Bali has been selected for the 2016 Interhash meet.

"The ‘Hash’ is a non-competitive running event that promotes fellowship. Entertainment and health,” explained Malaon at a planning meeting held in Bali on Thursday, September 10, 2015.

The Interhash has been held since 1978 growing to become an international running event that is held once ever two years in various locations hosted by local chapters of the Hash House Harriers.

Malaon, quoted by the State News Agency Antara, said that Bali had not hosted an Interhash run since 1988, despite bidding to serve as host in 2004, 2006 and 2008.

The selection of Bali as the Hash venue for 2016 was announced at the Interhash event held in Hainan in 2014.

The 2016 Bali Interhash is expecting participation by some 6,000 runners from around the world with 4,150 participants from 60 countries registered for the event.

The 2016 Bali Interhash will take place May 19-22, 2016 with pre-events taking place in Central Java and East Bali on May 15-19th.

2016 Bali Interhash Website

A Kilo and a Half of Solid Trouble

Bali Custom Officials Arrest Indian Traveler with 1.5 Kilograms of Methamphetamines

The State News Agency Antara reports that Customs Officials at Bali’s Ngurah Rai International Airport have arrested an Indian National - Sayed Mohammed Said (29) - in the process of trying to smuggle 1.5 kilograms of methamphetamines into Indonesia.

The Indian, who lists his employment as a sailor, caught the attention of Customs Officials on Saturday, September 5, 2015, while disembarking AirAsia QZ-521 landing from Bangkok at 6:00 pm.

Custom officials told the press that the Indian traveler was acting suspiciously while collecting his luggage.

A standard x-ray of the man’s luggage including a waist bag revealed the methamphetamines wrapped in plastic weighing a total of 1.516 kilograms.

A test performed on the substance confirmed that the concealed substance was methamphetamines.

Police have now made additional arrests in the case and believe the Indian was acting as a courrier for drugs destined to be sold in two Bali prisons.

Sky-High Price for Aviation Fuel

CEO of Pertamina Promises President that Cost of Aviation Fuel to Come Down to More Competitive Levels

The Indonesian State-owned Oil Company Pertamina has been ordered to reduce the price of aviation fuel that is more expensive than in neighboring countries.

Pertamina’s official website lists the price of aviation fuel for international flights at US$ 0.46.6 cents per liters and for domestic flight at Rp, 7,114.35 per liter or around US$0.54 cents per liter. quotes the CEO of Pertamina, Dwi Soetjipto, as admitting that aviation fuel in Indonesia costs 15% more than in neighboring Singapore. Soetjipto blamed the higher price on taxes and other issues.

Soetjipto admitted that the cost of aviation fuel should be the same, or even less, the in Singapore.

The Pertamina chief said the selling price of aviation fuel is being recalculated with a new price to be announced in October 2015.

Average Spend and Length of Stay in Bali

Bali by the Numbers: Bank Indonesia Reports Examines Tourist Spending, Length of Stay and Why Some Visitors Vow Never to Return to Bali

According to a survey conducted in May 2015 by the Bali branch of Bank Indonesia, foreign tourists visiting Bali spend an average of US$125.93 per day and stay an average of 8.66 days on the Island.

As reported by, Dewi Setyowati, the chief of Bank Indonesia in Bali, said the average daily spend declined from 2014 when daily expenditures stood at US$190.08 with a 8.19 day length of stay.

Bank Indonesia estimates that of the US$125.93 spent each day in Bali by a foreign tourist - 26.69% went to accommodation, 18.53% for food and beverage and 14,80% for shopping. This is a significant shift from 2014 when accommodation consumed 16.64%, transportation 15.27%, and sightseeing 15.19%.

Bank Indonesia sees changes in spending patterns by foreign tourists driven by changes in Bali’s hotel sector who are offering more “inclusive” elements in their accommodation offerings. In addition, shopping centers are offering aggressive discounts to lure customers into their shops.

Viewed by source market, U.S. visitors spend the most in Bali at US$188.10 per day. Somewhat surprisingly, Malaysian ranks as high-spenders at US$170.90 while neighboring Singaporeans are among the lowest spenders at US$90.82 per day.

Australians have the average longest length-of-stay in Bali at 9.28 days, followed closely by Americans at 9.06 days. Malaysian stay a relatively short period of 5 days.

Broken down into market segments defined by level of total spending, Bali visitors are comprised of:

·        Backpackers in total spending US$30-US4498 (27.75%)

·        Middle travelers with total spending of US$499 – US$965 (31.36%)

·        Upper middle travelers with total spending of US$966-US$2,868 (37.39%)

·        Top travelers with total spending exceeding US$2,868 (3.55%).

The Bank Indonesia Survey shows that 40.5% of all foreign visitors to Bali expressed an interest in visiting areas beyond Bali. At the same time, 59.5% told surveyors that had no plans to visit areas beyond Bali.

Is Everybody Happy? No!

Also worth noting is that 16.47% of Bali visitors from foreign lands left the Island saying they would be reluctant to return to Bali on a future holiday, with 1.87% saying they would definitely not return to Bali.

Chief among the complaints voiced by these disaffected visitors were crowded conditions, pollution, trash on public streets, high taxation, poor road conditions and a lack of suitable public facilities.

Frenchman Dies in Motorcycle Accident in East Bali

Frenchman Was Driving at High Rate of Speed on Night He Stuck a Concrete Wall

A 25-year-old French national, Wissary Maxime Simon, died in a traffic mishap near the village of Abang in Karangasem on Thursday, September 3, 2015.

Police theorize the Frenchman was driving a Honda Variou motorcycle on Jalan Bunutan near Abang from Buntunan to Culik at a high rate of sped at 11:30 pm when he lost control and crashed into a cement wall.

Forensic doctors at the Sanglah General Hospital said a superficial examination showed open wounds and bruising on the man’s face and limbs.

Death is being attributed to a severe fracture of the skull.

Police continue to investigate the case.

Blemished Reputation the Indonesian Police

National Police Chief Lashes Out at Bali Police Implicated in Extortion Plot

The National Chief of Police for Indonesia, General Badrodin Haiti, has spoken out angrily against members of the Indonesian police in Bali suspected of being involved in extorting money from 16 Australian tourists attending a bachelors’ party in Kuta in February of this year. In the view of the Nation’s leading policeman, the actions of his officers in this instance has blemished the reputation of the police and damaged the image of Bali before the world.

As reported by, General Badrodin confirms that the case is under process and those suspected of taking part under investigation.

Giving no quarter, the head of the National Police wants his officers put through the legal process if proof of their wrongdoing can be found.

“If they can be criminally processed, then process them. They can also be fired (from the police). Their termination would not be based (just) on this case, but there are perhaps other matters that must be taken into consideration. We await the results of the investigation,” said Badrodin, during a visit to Bali Police Headquarters in Friday, September 11, 2015.

The Chief of Police said that extortion against a group of 16 Australians couldn’t be allowed to happen. Such actions, he warned, are extremely dangerous, as actions among the public have become very transparent,

“I hope this case will not be repeated in Bali because it will certainly damage the image of the Indonesian Police and hurt tourism in Bali,” Badrodin said.

As reported widely in the international press, a group of 16 Australian tourists organized a striptease performance at a restaurant in Kuta on February 26, 2015 as part of a “bucks’ night” or bachelors’ party. The group was rounded up by policemen from the Kuta Police Precinct and brought to the police station. During the ensuing interrogation, the Australians told the press of being struck with beer bottles, tasered and threatened with a 10-year prison sentence. The Australians also alleged that they were only released after agreeing to sign an official apology and pay their captors Rp. 250 million.

Preliminary reports from investigators indicated that the Head of the Kuta Police Precinct, Ida Bagus Januartha, received part of the funds extorted from the Australian tourists.

Related Articles

Editorial: Bearing the Cost of Bearing Witness

A Call to Justice or Continued Police Impunity?

More Anti-Rabies Vaccine for Bali

Officials Say Anti-Rabies Vaccine (VAR) Available in all Areas of Bali

The Provincial Health Service of Bali has prepared an additional 14,000 vials of anti-rabies vaccine for humans (VAR) in order to ensure sufficient stocks are on hand to treat any dog bite victims.

Quoted by the State News Agency Antara, Dr. Ketut Suarjaya, Chief of the Bali Provincial Health Service, said: “We have added 14,000 vials of VAR to the earlier stock of 16,000 vials bring the current stock to 30,000 vials of VAR.”

Suarjaya confirmed that the VAR stocks have now been distributed to hospitals across the 9 regencies and metropolitan areas of Bali.

The Province believes the current supply of VAR is sufficient to the Island’s needs and will avoid previous situations in which people in need of VAR failed to receive treatment.

“At the same time, we hope that the number of incidents of dog bites will decline,” he added.

He urged people to cage their pet dogs in order to prevent dog bites.

Related Article

Vials of Salvation Now Available

El Niño Hits Bali

856 Hectares of Bali Farmland Facing Drought Threat

The Provincial Agricultural Department of Bali calculates some 856.35 hectares of farmland is suffering some degree of drought ranging from “light” to “severe” that threatens the coming harvest.

Ida Bagus Winsuardhana, the head of the Provincial Agriculture Department, told NusaBali, on Wednesday, September 9, 2015, “Through the end of August 2015 the total amount of rice fields that have failed to yield a harvest is 140 hectares.”

Of that total, the largest amount of failed cropland is in North Bali in Buleleng with 112.5 hectares. The remaining land failing to produce a crop is in Badung (1 hectare), Karangasem (10 hectare) and Jembrana (16.5 hectares).

Similarly, the majority of land suffering a light degree of drought is found in Buleleng.

Agricultural officials expect drought conditions will increase and spread to other areas of Bali as the full effects of El Niño runs it course.

In order to save crop lands experiencing light to moderate drought conditions, the Province is undertaking steps to keep irrigation channels flowing and make water available to affected farmers. At the same time, additional seeds and fertilizers are being distributed to alleviate hardship of the Island’s farmers.

Small tractors and water pumps are also being made available to selected farmers.

Urgent efforts are underway to restore and upgrade irrigation ditches that, when completed, will provide water to some 39.396 hectares.

One Before Bed and Early to Rise

Man Selling Sexual Performance Enhancement Pills and Other Drugs in Kuta Arrested by Bali Police

A 28-year-old young man, identified by the police only with the initials SLH, has been taken into custody by Narcotic Officers from the Denpasar Police Precinct charged with selling a range of sexual performance enhancers, aphrodisiacs and prescription drugs, Basing his operation on Jalan Legian in Kuta, the unlicensed drug operation saw police confiscate 9.362 pills or capsules and 11 types of aphrodisiacs.

Police moved on the operation after receiving reports from those living in the area who frequently saw the man offering aphrodisiac, sexual performance enhancers and other pills to tourists passing by his location in close proximity to a local nightspot.

Narcotic officers place SLH under surveillance for several days that led them to his place of residence where his large stash of drugs were discovered.

According to DenPost, among the drugs confiscated by police include: Xanax (2,980 pills), Ephidrin (2,880 pills), Viagra (360 capsules), Quantidex and Tripolidine ( 690 pills), Valdimex Diazepam (680 pills), and unspecified quantity of Cialis and Tramadol.

Police estimate the value of the drug haul at Rp, 30 million.

When capture by police SLH, who hails from Lombok and has a 4-month-old child, complained that traditional medicine (jamu) stands openly sell the same drugs in Kuta but are not subjected to arrest by police.

The man is now facing charges in connection with  the illegal distribution of prescription drugs that carry a maximum penalty of 10 years in prison and a fine of Rp.1.5 billion.

In a Reforming Mood

Editorial: The Government Needs to Reform Taxes Paid by Indonesian Tour and Travel Agents

In an order to make Indonesia more competitive, the Administration of President Joko Widodo has announced a whole range of regulatory and administrative reforms intended to stimulate the national economy.

And, while they're at, we hope President Widodo and his Cabinet will also take a serious  look at the many barriers and counterproductive measures preventing Indonesia from achieving the ambitious goal of 20 million foreign tourists by 2019.

Near the top of our list of needed reforms is the urgent need to abolish the 1% VAT (value added tax) currently paid by tour and travel agents on their gross sales.

While the 1% VAT charged on tour agent sales is only a small fraction of the 10% VAT already charged on retail sales in Indonesia, it still represents a significant disincentive to those laboring on the front line of promoting Indonesian tourism to the world.

The reasons for abolishing the 1% VAT paid by Indonesian tour operator are both straight forward and in the national interest.

Firstly, the 1% VAT places Indonesian tour operators at a competitive disadvantage in promoting travel, tours, conferences and incentives. Indonesian travel products, at least in theory, become 1% more expensive when sold by Indonesian tour operators. Similarly, when overseas travel operators deal directly with Indonesian hotels and attractions instead of using the services of an experience tour operator they may enjoy an 1% price advantage.

Secondly, the 1% VAT represents a case of “double taxation.” Whenever an Indonesian tour agent creates a travel product including hotel, air and land transportation components – each of these components is already taxed at their point of sale, making the additional tax of 1% charged by tour agents an unneeded burden placed on those member of the tourism industry who success guarantees greater tax revenues for the government.

If the government truly wants to promote national tourism it will eliminate the 1% tax burden on tour and travel agent sales, leaving this market sector to pay only payroll (PPh 21) and Corporate profit taxes (PPh 25).

Take the Bus to the Airport

New 56-Kilometer Long Public Bus System Connect Bali Airport with Tabanan

“Corridor #8” – the newest route on Bali’s Trans-Sabargita public transport system commences operation on Thursday, September 17, 2015.

The launch of the new 56-kilometer bus route connecting Tabanan and Bali’s Ngurah Rai Airport coincides with the celebration of Indonesia’s National Transportation Day.

The way points on Corridor 8 are: Tabanan Pesiapan Bus Terminal – Mengwi Terminal – Kapal – Sempidi – Kargo Terminal – Jalan Soputan – Iman Bonjol – Sunset Road – Ngurah Rai Airport.

Corridor 8 will be operated by the Damri Bus System as part of the Sarbagita Bus System.

As reported by the State News Agency Antara, the 56-kilomter route is, in fact, operated as three separate routes, each segment charging a bus fare of Rp. 2,500 – Rp. 3,500. Therefore, someone traveling the entire route from end-to-end would pay the above fare times three.

17 busses each carrying 50 passengers will serve the new Corridor 8 route.

Bali Airport Officials Preying on Chinese Visitors?

Chinese Tourists File Police Complaint Alleging Mistreatment by Immigration Officials at Bali’s Airport reports that a Chinese tourist, Zhang Tao, has reported that he was coerced and robbed by two uniformed officials at Bali’s Ngurah Rai International Airport during the arrival process at 3:00 am on Saturday, September 12, 2015.

In a report filed with the Bali Police, Zhang Tao and his traveling companions told police that they arrived in Bali on Southern China Flight CZ3005 that landed at 10 minutes past midnight. During the immigration process, an official offered an accelerated immigration and customs process, if the Chinese were prepared to hand over 500 RMB.

Zhang Tao refused the special service and says he eventually gave the man 100 RMB when he was threatened that he would not be given a visa on arrival without some payment. Insisting on more money, the official was then given an additional 100 RMB by another member of Zhang’s group.

After collecting their baggage and passing the Custom’s check, Zhang Tao was again approached in the outside greeting area by the same official who had demanded money inside the arrival terminal, but this time accompanied by two men wearing red and black jackets. The Chinese travelers were followed to the parking area by the men.

The "officials" then said they wanted to undertake a check of the group’s luggage alleging that the visiting Chinese were carrying narcotics.

Angered by the persistent efforts to coerce, Zhang Tao told the men that any inspection should have taken place inside the terminal and not the parking lot. He then asked one of his friends to use his hand phone and take a picture of the three men.

At this point, the man wearing the red jacket – said to be an immigration official in the report, then snatched the traveler’s IP6+ hand phone and  fled when the party meeting the Chinese tourists arrived on the scene.

The head of the Ngurah Rai Immigration Office, Rai Yohanes Widodo, confirmed that his office had received a report of the incident on Saturday. “I was surprised and shocked when I received this report. The new is correct that we have received such a report,” said Widodo, who said the matter was now in the hands of the police.

The report to immigration was the result of a formal police complaint made at the Airport Police Station filed by Zhang Tao and his five companions.

The immigration official asked that the complaint be handled in a serious manner, saying the image of Bali tourism is damaged by such instances. If found guilty of coercion and the misuse of their official position, the head of the immigration office said the sternest possible punishment would be given to those involved in the case.
Om Çanti Çanti Çanti Om ...

J.M. Daniels,
Editor Bali Update
Bali Discovery Tour

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